issued fourth-quarter earnings guidance Thursday that encompasses Wall Street's consensus estimate.
The oil exploration and production company expects to earn 75 cents to 95 cents a share in the quarter, compared with analysts' forecast of 89 cents a share, compiled by Thomson First Call.
The company expects to report that it produced 103,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day in the quarter and sold 107,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day. Downstream retail earnings should be about $23 million, with strong margins offset by the closure of its Meraux refinery by Hurricane Katrina.
Murphy said dry hole charges for unsuccessful oil wells should range between $25 million and $62 million in the quarter. Total worldwide exploration expense including those charges should be between $52 million and $89 million.
Shares fell 50 cents, or 0.9%, to $56.45 early Thursday.